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Making the Ugly Beautiful

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Photographer Igor Siwanowicz is a master of his craft. He not only takes stunning images of lizards, frogs and insects, he also manages to make these often loathed creatures look like supermodels. Whether using a zoom, macro or microscope lens, his subjects seem to go from creepy crawly to downright dreamy.

His book, Animals Up Close, takes this gift one step further, by providing fascinating information about many of his subjects, combining the attractive photos seen in coffee table books with the useful facts offered in reference texts.

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9 Exhilarating Close-Up Photos of Sharks
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Dive into the world of Shark, a new book by award-winning photographer Brian Skerry.

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Art
This Artist Makes Portraits of Insects From the Plants They Eat
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The plant art of Montreal-based artist Raku Inoue goes way beyond flower arrangements. Inoue, who created the clothing brand Reikan Apparel, fashions intricate portraits of insects out of the plants that make up their habitats, as Laughing Squid spotted.

The series, "Natura Insects," includes butterflies made of flower petals, leaves intricately woven into moth wings, and black widows with rosemary legs. The results are delicate, innocent-looking bugs that no person could bear to squash. Inoue carefully arranges the pretty plant sculptures, then photographs them against a white background, resulting in an unexpected take on the traditional insect display cases seen in natural history museums.

If you like flower-based art, Inoue recently debuted a series in which his flower-petal figures blend into adorable illustrations of kids.

[h/t Laughing Squid]

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